K54. Spectacular Wakizashi Signed Motohira, Fine Mounts, Gimei
K54. Wakizashi signed Oku Yamato no Kami Taira Ason Motohira and dated Kansei 9 Uma Haru: if only it were right.
Nagasa: 16 1/2" 42 cm.
Sori: .9 cm.
Moto haba: 3.7 cm.
Moto kasane: .6 cm.
Saki haba: 3 cm.
Saki kasane: .4 cm.
Nakago nagasa: 5 5/16" 13.3 cm.
Overall in koshirae: 23 3/16" 59 cm.
Ko itame hada. Little bit of everything in the hamon; call it notare gunome maybe. Bright nioi guchi covered in nie, much of it ara-nie. there are tons of activity in this hamon and my pictures don't begin to do it justice. The boshi, on an impressive o-kissaki, is a continuation of the hamon and just as covered in nie with chu-maru and a short kaeri. Other than one opening under the habaki on the ura and one piece of slightly coarse grain (both pictured) the blade is flawless. In polish and mounted with a silver foil habaki.
The koshirae are quite nice. The fuchi, kashira, koi guchi, kurikata, and kojiri are en suite: waves carved in silver. The kotsuka is a good match. There is a pocket for a kogai but there is no kogai. The menuki are Samurai bugu themed. The saya is reddish brown lacquer on spiral ribbing and with some cracking along the ha and mune.
Motohira is a big name in Satsuma, probably the biggest. In my opinion this is gimei, a forged signature. The work, however, is correct for Satsuma-To, maybe even for Motohira. It is also my opinion that, if the new owner wanted to make the effort, both the mei and date could be removed by a competent polisher and the blade would paper. This is an unusually wide 42 cm. wakizashi, heavy in the hand, and well mounted; there's a lot to enjoy if you can look past the signature.
2 pounds, 5 ounces. $3,500.
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